‘Red Schiphol Campaign’ launched to challenge airport capacity limits

Aerial view of the Tower at Amsterdam Schiphol Airport.
Photo Credit: Ikreis, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The Red Schiphol Campaign has now been launched in response to the Rutte government’s decision to limit the number of flights taking off and landing at Schiphol Airport to 440,000 per year.

Referring to the airport’s capacity limitation plan as the ‘440 decision’, the campaign is seeking to unite businesses, community activists and trade bodies who are opposed to the decision to limit the number of flight movements at Schiphol and wish to see the decision reversed

Protecting Schiphol Airport as a national asset

“Schiphol Airport is a national asset that helps the Netherlands to punch above its weight in terms of global business connectivity.”

“The airport directly employs over 2,000 people and supports many more jobs throughout the wider economy. In 2019, IATA predicted that if Dutch air travel was weakened, a worrying 84,000 jobs could be lost in the future” said George Chichester, Red Schiphol Campaign Manager.  

He added: “Climate change is the most important challenge of this decade, with potentially serious consequences for both current and future generation.s”

“However, limiting the number of flights at Schiphol will simply divert the same planes to other hub airports such as Heathrow and Charles De Gaulle; doing nothing to bring down global emissions from aviation.”

Resultant increase in competition

Reducing the number of flights at Schiphol will also increase competition for the remaining flight slots, leading to an increase in ticket prices.

These costs will disproportionately affect ordinary Dutch families, who are already struggling as a result of high energy prices and the cost of living.

Rich travellers will be able to shoulder these costs, but ordinary families will have to cut back on travel.  

Schiphol’s role as a global transport hub helps to support thousands of jobs and businesses in the Netherlands.

Prior to the pandemic, the aviation industry contributed €22 billion to the country’s GDP and in 2019 Amsterdam was the third-best internationally connected city in Europe.

Recent Schiphol developments

Last week, lawyers acting for Royal Schiphol Group outlined the case defending Amsterdam Schiphol Airport’s decision to place capacity limits on aircraft movements.

Legal proceedings were brought against the Royal Schiphol Group and the Ministry of I&W by KLM and a group of airlines.

Through its lawyers, Schiphol said that it “considers a reduction in the number of aircraft movements from 500,000 to 460,000 per year as a necessary interim step that ensures certainty in advance of a new Airport Traffic Decree.”

This, the airport management group claims, should provide certainty and perspective for local residents as well as airlines.

Supporting Red Schiphol

The Red Schiphol campaign has commissioned research by the independent Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR) to assess the economic impact of reducing the number of flight movements at Schiphol Airport. You

The group is encouraging any Dutch businesses or citizens who are concerned by the ‘440 decision’ to join the campaign.

Concerned parties are also urged to sign the groups petition calling on the government to change its position. The petition can be accessed here.

By Len Varley - Assistant Editor 4 Min Read
4 Min Read
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